Leonard Baskin and Ted Hughes



In 1983 the poet laureate Ted Hughes and renowned American printmaker and sculptor Leonard Baskin, his collaborator for many years on illustrated books of Hughes's poems, took part in an audio recording in which they talked about their longstanding friendship and how their work together evolved.

The recording was made at the home of the Baskin family, then living in Devon, close to where Hughes lived. Originally intended as voice-over for a film about them that was never completed, this historic recording now published for the first time is the basis of a forty-minute video film, exploring in intimate detail the genesis of key works including CROW and CAVE BIRDS.

The video includes Hughes reading extracts from his own poems, extensive illustration of Baskin's prints and works of sculpture, and a mass of previously unseen photographs of the participants.

Premiered before an invited audience at Exeter University, screened at the Ways With Words litfest at Dartington, the Dylan Thomas litfest, London’s Barbican docspot, the annual Ted Hughes festival at Mytholmroyd, his birthplace, and Pembroke College, Cambridge, his alma mater, this acclaimed video film is now available on DVD.

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